Jack Milner picks out the best bets from the 2020 US Open at Winged Foot, which you can bet with the legal online sportsbooks for huge returns
The US Open has a new date in the sporting calendar and a new set of circumstances, with Winged Foot likely to be somewhat hollow with the New York venue typically a favourite for fans and players alike. This will be the sixth time that Winged Foot has staged the US Open with Geoff Ogilvy causing something of an upset to win his solitary major when last staged here in 2006, and I’m hopeful for further surprises this week from those a fair way from the top of the market.
That market is headed by World Number One Dustin Johnson who has got better and better as the rescheduled season as progressed. His form figures read 2-1-2-1 after capturing The Fedex Cup and DJ boasts an outstanding record on this week’s Poa Annua greens and is undoubtedly the man to beat.
His scrambling is the only drawback from an otherwise exceptional arsenal, with his extraordinary length off the tee traditionally vital in modern-day US Opens. Gary Woodland last year, and before him Brooks Koepka (twice) and Dustin Johnson all ranked higher for distance than accuracy off-the-tee and if you can’t hit it far with the big stick then you’re going to struggle around Winged Foot.
Despite Tiger Woods re-writing the history books at August last April, and Brooks winning four of the last twelve, first-time winners have a terrific record breaking their duck in recent times and I’m more than happy to chance my arm on further debutant success this week.
Average Rankings – Last 10 US Open Winners
Driving Accuracy – 23.5
Driving Distance – 16.4
G.I.R – 6
Scrambling – 10
Putting Average – 15.8
A man who somehow remains without any major championship success is Matt Kuchar, who has everything but in a sparking 20+ year career. Kuchar won The Players’ Championship in 2012 and has one of the best short games in the business. The 42-year old ranked inside the top ten for putting in the last two seasons on tour and has the temperament and has the necessary scrambling and the iron-game to better his three-figure price.
Both Shane Lowry and Louis Oosthuizen are two tremendously consistent performers, with the former claiming The Claret Jug in front of a partisan Irish crowd 12 months ago. Oosthuizen meanwhile, chased home Jordan Spieth in the 2015 renewal and has been a runner-up in all four majors and possesses one of the best swings in the game.
Nevertheless, I’m happy to stick with the pursuit of maiden major winners and whilst I expect the ‘big three’ of American young guns Bryson Dechambeau, Xander Schauffele and Patrick Cantlay all to claim major success before their respective careers finish, I’m happy to swerve at the current prices.
I’m instead happy to chance Chez Reavie who produced a sparkling final round to finish T3 last week at The Safeway Open. Reavie finished third in the US Open 12 months ago at Pebble Beach and is another that looks too big at the current prices.
The past five, and indeed 8 of the last 12, winners have been from the United States but I expect this year’s leaderboard to boast an international flavour. Christian Bezuidenhout remains a player on a huge upward curve, with the South African making a smooth transition to the PGA Tour earlier in the year.
He remains a player I am keen to keep on the right side of and the same goes for Ben An. The 28-year old beat a star-studded line-up to win The BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth and went under the radar with a T16 finish in The US Open at Pebble Beach 12 months ago – he could sneak into a place if his putter gets warm.
Finally, keep an eye on the two up-and-coming Canadians Corey Connors and Mackenzie Hughes. The former shed the maiden tag on tour 12 months ago in the Valero Texas Open and has been tremendously consistent on tour thereafter; ranking 6th on tour for GIR and 16th for strokes gained tee-to-green.
Hughes has yet to add to the RSM Classic success of 2016 but was somewhat unlucky to finish second in The Honda in March and claimed four top-ten finished on tour last season. He made a first Tour Championship, with play-off finishes of 13-10-14 and clearly arrives at Winged Foot with his game in great nick.
2020 US Open Selections
Matt Kuchar 100-1
Chez Reavie 150-1
Christian Bezuidenhout 200-1
Ben An 150-1
Corey Conners 175-1
Mackenzie Hughes 150-1